Parenting Styles

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Running Head: FOUR DIFFERENT STYLES OF PARENTING 1

Four different styles of parenting and their effects on children

Samantha Johnson

Hillsborough Community College

FOUR DIFFERENT STYLES OF PARENTING 2 Four different styles of parenting and their effects on children

The correlation between parenting styles and child development has always interested me and therefore is the reason why I chose to write about it. A parenting style can be defined as a psychological construct representing standard strategies that parents use in their child rearing. During the 1960’s, psychologist Diana Baumrind conducted a study in which she used naturalistic observation, parental interviews, and other research methods to study over 100 preschool-aged children. It was from this study that she determined three different types of parenting based on two aspects of parenting behavior: control and warmth. Parental control can be described as the amount of supervision parents exercise, the decisions parents make about their children’s activities and friends, and the rules parents give to their children (Amato 1990). Amato has also characterized parental warmth as the expression of interest in children’s activities and friends, expression of praise and encouragement for their children’s accomplishments, and the demonstration of love and affection. The three different styles of parenting that Baumrind identified were authoritarian parenting, authoritative parenting, and permissive parenting. Further research also added a fourth type of parenting called uninvolved parenting.

One of the main parenting styles defined by Baumrind was the authoritarian parenting style. In this specific form of parenting, parents are very strict with the rules they give their children and expect these rules to be followed unconditionally. Basically, obedience to the strict rules equates to love. These parents hold high expectations of their kids. They demand obedience and status within their children’s lives and are very FOUR DIFFERENT STYLES OF PARENTING 3

demanding, yet unresponsive. Authoritarian parents tend to want to have complete and total control over their families. It can also sometimes be referred to as military style of parenting. Authoritarian parenting expects kids to accept parent’s judgments, values, and opinions without any questioning. As in, “you do what I say because I said so.” So what are the effects of an authoritarian parenting style on a child? Children raised in an authoritarian style household tend to have lower self-esteem, lower self-discipline, and an unequal regard for other humans. These kids are known to have bad judgment of character, poor social skills, and often this parenting style leads to rebellious acts by the kid. Because of the parent’s rules, children of authoritarian parents often are forced to associate obedience and success with love. Since these types of parents demand absolute obedience, their children are often very good at following rules. However, they tend to not be self-disciplined. These children are not encouraged by their parents to explore and act independently, which in turn results in the kids never really learning how to set their own limits and standards. Consequently, another style of parenting that was identified in the 1960’s was the authoritative style of parenting. Parents following this specific parenting style are all about setting limits, reasoning with their kids, and being responsive to their emotional needs. As you can see, it takes a little from the authoritarian style by setting limits, but in actuality is the complete opposite because it involves the unconditional love and nurturing that kids need. The most successful child outcomes are usually linked to an authoritative style of parenting. When looking at characteristics of kids raised this way, they tend to be more FOUR DIFFERENT STYLES OF PARENTING...
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